Job seekers in today’s market have every reason to conduct themselves professionally in all situations. A great example is the Business 2.0 article on “job auditions” at Southwest Airlines:

“The carrier, known for its outgoing and convivial service, begins assessing employment candidates before they even realize it. The company gives them a special ticket which informs gate agents, flight attendants, and other employees that the individual is being flown out to the company’s headquarters for an interview. These employees observe and report on the candidate’s behavior during the journey. Rude, loud, impolite, or otherwise unpleasant behavior will cause a person to be rejected even if they ace the actual interview.”

What’s the lesson? In today’s competitive job market, the interview begins from the first nanosecond of contact you have with an employer’s representatives. It means making sure that you treat every e-mail message, phone call, and interaction if it were your very last chance to make a positive impression.

– Excerpted from Career Directors International CareerBytes newsletter, July 2006

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